Peter Svidler is a great player, but I'm still surprised that he was chosen by the Russian organizers of the 2014 Candidates' tournament as their wildcard selection. (HT to Daniel Parmet for alerting me to this.) Svidler just won his 7th Russian Championship, but rated #13 in the world compared to his fellow Russian and world #5 Alexander Grischuk, he seemed the less likely choice. Apparently, according to Chess Today's report on this interview, it was Svidler's strong performance in this year's Candidates' event that persuaded them to give him a second chance.
With that, all the finalists for next year's Candidates' tournament are set. (Sort of.) They are:
1. The loser of the Magnus Carlsen/Viswanathan Anand match.
2. Vladimir Kramnik (World Cup winner)
3. Dmitry Andreikin (World Cup runner-up)
4. Veselin Topalov (Grand Prix series winner)
5. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Grand Prix series runner-up)
6. Levon Aronian (Highest rated player not to qualify by other means)
7. Sergey Karjakin (Second-highest rated player not to qualify by other means)
8. Peter Svidler (Organizer's wildcard pick)